The loss of more than $500,000 in state revenue sharing will mean a greater shift to property taxes to pay for the 2010-2011 Rockland municipal budget, which was released April 16 by City Manager Rosemary Kulow.

The proposed spending for city operations is up 1.7 percent to $11 million but the loss of the revenue sharing means additional money will need to come from property owners.

And the projected jump in Rockland’s payments to Regional School Unit 13 means that the tax rate may reach $18.25 in 2010, up $1.05 (6 percent) from the current $17.20. This means a person owning a home assessed at $150,000 will pay an additional $158 in property taxes.

The city manager’s proposed budget was distributed to councilors April 16. Kulow will make a formal presentation to councilors Wednesday, April 21 at 6:30 p.m. The council will then review various accounts beginning Monday, April 26 with the fire department and emergency medical services. The solid waste department will be reviewed Wednesday, April 28. The police department will be reviewed Wednesday, May 5; the public works department on Wednesday, May 12; departments starting with letters A through G and the library on Monday, May 17; departments H through W on Wednesday, May 19; sewer on Monday, May 24; and capital improvement projects on Wednesday, May 26. The meetings all begin at 6:30 p.m. and are broadcast on government access Channel 22.

Preliminary adoption is scheduled for the May 26 meeting with final adoption set for Wednesday, June 16.

The most significant change in the budget from the current 2009-2010 budget is the loss of state revenue sharing. The city expects to see this income source drop from $1,274,141 in 2009-2010 to $754,248 in the next budget year, a loss of $519,893.

The largest department in the city is the police department proposed at $1,748,185. This is down $98,900 (5 percent). The manager has recommended not filling a vacant patrol officer position during the next budget year but to fill it in the 2011-2012 fiscal year.

The department’s budget message notes that during the past 20 years, calls increased from 8,000 annually to 14,000 annually but the number of officers has remained the same.

The public works budget is proposed at $1,532,548, down $70,215 (4 percent). Two long-time employees are considering retiring and not replacing them would save about $75,000 in salary and benefits. The budget also calls for not hiring part-time workers this summer as has been done in past years, a move that would save $20,800.

The solid waste budget is proposed at $1,449,179, up $84,857 (6 percent).

The fire department budget is proposed at $1,351,309, up $33,323 (2.5 percent).

The debt service account, which includes loan repayments, is proposed at $1,185,195, up $33,571 (3 percent).

The lights and hydrants budget is proposed at $606,445, up $53,597 (10 percent).

The library budget is proposed at $555,554, up $1,420 (less than 1 percent).

The finance department budget is proposed at $391,545, up $26,576 (7 percent).

The recreation department is proposed at $348,390, up $3,855 (1 percent).

In terms of the sewer account, which is paid for through sewer fees rather than property taxes, the budget recommends a 4 percent increase in rates. The sewer budget is proposed at $3,276,082, an increase of $71,589 (2 percent).

The capital improvement budget for the city includes a list of items. Those items will not affect the 2010-2011 budget since the projects would be paid for through issuance of bonds that would result in repayments in following years. The largest item on the list of capital projects is a new public works garage proposed at $1.7 million. A salt and sand shed is proposed at $300,000. A dump truck with sander, wing and plow is proposed at $130,000.

The bond issue would need to go before voters for their approval for it to go forward.

The city budget includes $135,352 in the contingency account for cost-of-living increases for municipal employees. The city has not granted raises for workers in 2009-2010 although negotiations remain in mediation.

The city budget estimates that $13,813,290 in property taxes will need to be raised. The largest amount will be $6,942,917 for RSU 13. This amounts to slightly more than 50 percent of the total taxes raised. The amount of property taxes to be raised for the city is $6,168,165. The city’s share of the Knox County budget is $702,208.